It took forever to get around Rangiroa. So many tacks. We finally made it around at 11 pm last night. Trying to sail the direction from which the wind blows doubles, no triples, no quadruples, the length of any journey.
We passed within a few nautical miles of the eastern edge of Rangiroa and I could have sworn I heard men speaking Tahitian close to my ears. I was nervous too, because the night was made of ink, and I couldn’t see the motus, and I didn’t know if that east to west flowing current would be pushing me into the archipelago, as some had said it could.
We are way beyond the point of Venus now and our mollusk has rough edges and deep growth lines. Everything swirls.
I see a cloud that is the weaver of all women. She weaves them underwater. She blows bubbles and molds them into breasts and wombs. She places seaweed on top and hair takes shape.
The Southern Cross hangs soft and sideways in the sky as we are showered in meteors of Gemini. They cascade in shimmers from all around. There are so many that I wonder if every piece of light is spilling out of the night. Some are close enough for me to smell their falling fire. I want to feel them inside the pulsing of my own body. I want to absorb them into my blood, into my cells, into my salt. I want them to surf through me from head to heart to toe. I open my mouth, stick out my tongue, and wait for one to land. One never does.
I search the horizon for other ships. I see smoke undulating from the starboard bow pulpit. My navigation light is catching fire. I see the amps rising high. I turn the breaker off, before it trips on its own. I should install a tri-color at the top of the mast. The navigation lights on the pulpit have been a perpetual pain and it is a hazard for other boats not to know which way I am flowing.
This morning the wind is puffing stronger and I am reefed down. It was holding east all through the night and we were making a perfect heading to Ahe, but it has shifted back north and more tacking is in our future. I hope we make it by sundown. If not it will be a long night of killing time outside the pass and waiting for daylight to reappear.